Reviews for El Deafo, by David Lasky, Cece Bell

Nadia Batista's review
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Um dos livros mais fofos que li ultimamente, El Deafo surpreendeu-me bastante. Numa espécie de memória em banda desenhada, Cece Bell conta-nos as dificuldades de crescer com surdez, de uma forma cómica e super querida. É sem dúvida um livro que devia ser mais conhecido, tanto por pessoas que sofrem do mal como para quem não sofre. Para quem tem surdez, principalmente os mais novos que nem sempre conseguem ter percepção do quão mauzinho pode ser o mundo, a autora transforma esse pequeno monstro numa maravilhosa história de super heróis. Para quem não tem, é uma boa maneira de evitar que as pessoas façam figuras de parvas ao lidar com surdos. Definitivamente uma leitura que vale bem a pena.

MegKerk's review
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adventurous informative inspiring fast-paced


araneose's review
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funny hopeful informative inspiring lighthearted fast-paced


The Real Nani's review
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Never have I read a book that summed up my life so perfectly. Every deaf kid and everyone who has a deaf person in their life should read this book. So much of it was so spot on. Seriously spot on.

kaleskorner's review
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This was a delightful book with an endearing story. While it was told from a child's prospective, I enjoyed the honesty and the imaginative nature. I will remember this story fondly, especially since I learned a lot about the deaf/hard-of-hearing community. I think all of us have a "superhero" side to us and "El Deafo" brought Cece's to life.

Mehsi's review
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Re-read April 2020. I decided to re-read this one. I had fun, but not as much fun as I had the first time I read it going by the review I posted and what I remember from reading it the first time. I wasn't a fan of El Deafo, and some things were just silly. I did like seeing how Cece was doing after she lost her hearing and seeing how well she was doing and trying her best to get everywhere. I can imagine her frustrations with people.
Plus, I loved Mike he was just the sweetest.
I had a big laugh that she was surprised her new friend from across the street knew about her hearing aids. UM GIRL... anyone with working eyes can see them sticking in your ears...
Martha was just annoying. IT ISN"T YOUR FAULT. GOod lord, you were playing, accidents happen. Get over it. :|


4.5 stars!

I heard quite a lot of good stories about this book, a lot of people all over the internet gave it great reviews and that wasn't the only reason why I was interested. I love graphic novels, and the topic of the book seemed interesting. Especially since you don't often find a book about deaf kids/people.

This book was indeed really good and I felt sorry for Cece, especially in the beginning. How she went from a happy kid to a kid that was sick and lost her hearing. But as soon as the problem is discovered she finds happiness again. Though the road of a deaf person isn't an easy one it seems. Cece finds out that people aren't always kind about her hearing aids, people laugh at her or act like she is an idiot.
What I loved about Cece is that even with everything that happens, she stays strong. Sure there are moments that everything sucks, but she makes up these wonderful stories about her alternate ego: El Deafo to counter and help with these problems. El Deafo defeats her enemies or problems and occasionally due to her El Deafo persona she solves a problem or talks to someone she would never have dared to talk to.

There is a whole variety of characters, not all of them are really nice. Like Laura, I really disliked her and how she treated Cece. No one should treat someone like that, acting like they are all superior, and even sending the dog after her as a game.

Martha was a lovely character, but I was sad that after events she ran away from Cece. However, I can imagine, she is quite young and to see something like that happen when you know that person is already deaf. Though I wish she would just have put aside her guilt and fear and just opened up to Cece about it. Now it felt a bit silly and overly dramatic. She did more harm with running away constantly.

It was a bit weird that the characters were all bunnies, I was kind of hoping that it was only the cover that had a bunny. At times it just looked weird (with how they wear headphones or how their hair looks).

Another thing that I found weird was that Cece apparently never wore anything else than a bikini in the first parts. I thought at first that it was just her imagination and that she was actually wearing something normal, but then we saw pictures of her and friends... and even in the middle of the winter she was wearing a bikini...... Why?
It is just a small piece, but it bothered me a bit and it felt awkward.

The story was great, there was lots of information about how it feels to be deaf (at least from Cece's Point of View) and all about the deaf aid and sign language. I didn't like how the teachers behaved at times, especially that PE teacher. He should be helpful and not just carelessly drop expensive equipment like that.

The illustrations were colourful and fun. There were enough details, though again, bunnies. It was just awkward.

All in all though, I would recommend this book to everyone.

Review first posted at

ifer's inklings's review
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4.5 stars.
This was a cute graphic novel based on the authors experience of her own hearing loss and relearning to navigate through a hearing world.

theartolater's review
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It's always nice to see an award winning book for kids that deserves it these days. El Deafo, while somewhat flawed, is still an inspirational read that manages to be fun, informative, and touching all at the same time.

The story about a girl (well, rabbit girl, but whatever) who becomes functionally deaf after falling ill and receives a hearing device that makes her feel like a superhero, the story does a great job of demonstrating the difficulty of the disability and both the expected and unexpected issues that come with it while keeping the tone light enough to have some fun with it as it goes on.

The graphic format lends itself well to the topic, but the downside is that there is not a significant endpoint to the story and, much like other tales in this genre, the story just sort of exists without coming to an enjoyable conclusion. It doesn't take away from the ride, but just the destination.

This book belongs in every public and school library, for sure. Kids who like realistic stories will find a lot to love here, and this is definitely a demonstration of where diverse books can go in an era where the clamor for such books is so significant. Definitely recommended.

RachelVerna's review
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I've always found it baffling that the Deaf community as a whole rejects the word 'Disability' so hard, but if you grow up in a hearing world you are disabled. Being disabled is living in a world that is not set up for you. You don't have to identify with that word I guess but it's really invalidating reading about someone going through constant ableism, external and internal, then reading an author note that plays disability as the worst thing in the world to be. Bell has yet to get over her internal ableism going off that note. Talking about being disabled is a bad thing is ableist and really invalidating to disabled people. I guess from own experience, internal ableism does cause harm to people so that's probably why it makes me so uneasy. Being disabled is hard, but it's not a bad word.

A lot of this book deals with Ableism or how school could be inaccessible to her. I have audio processing issues so they were things I related to and the way it can be isolating having to have additional support in school. This a semi-memoir so I can't rate on the plot because the plot was her life. Cece is very relatable in her frustrations.

I think the actual problem I have is, this isn't really a book about self-acceptable. It's more we're all different/useful in our own way and no one is actually playing attention. I guess are useful lessons, it just not the lesson I would want to give a kid facing ableism today.

readalongwithnat's review
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Luke recommended this graphic novel to me like five years ago. I finally picked it up from the library today and couldn't wait to read it. I'll definitely be on the lookout for a copy of this one to add to my own shelves. Great story, love the artwork, appreciate the own voices representation especially in a children's book.


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